Counting your calories and increasing your protein intake are not the only things you need to build strong muscles. To increase your muscle mass, your body needs certain vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that help in increasing supply of fuel to the muscles during workouts and assist in repairing and building the muscle tissues and increasing their strength. A diet for building muscles should therefore contain sufficient amount of foods that provide these essential nutrients. To build strong muscles, add foods rich in the following nutrients to your diet or take the following supplements.
These Are 8 Best Nutrients To Build Strong Muscles
1. Vitamin C
Vitamin C plays an important role in increasing muscle strength. It is essential for synthesis of collagen, the main structural protein that helps in holding together the muscle cells. Vitamin C assists the muscles to use iron and oxygen efficiently. Furthermore, it helps the muscles to use fatty acids for energy production. This helps in reducing depletion of glycogen the main fuel source, and hence helps in boosting muscle endurance. 
2. Vitamin D
Vitamin D helps in maintaining muscle mass and improving muscle function. Vitamin D is involved in increasing the sensitivity of the muscles to leucine and insulin. The amino acid leucine and the hormone insulin are involved in muscle building. Furthermore, boosting the vitamin D reserve of the body helps in reducing the risk of muscle injuries. Apart from spending some time in the sun to stimulate vitamin D synthesis in your body, adding vitamin D rich foods such as salmon, tuna and vitamin D fortified foods to your diet helps in strengthening the muscles. 
3. Vitamin E
Vitamin E helps in boosting muscle performance. As a powerful antioxidant, vitamin E helps in reducing oxidative stress in the muscles during workouts. Studies have shown that taking vitamin E before workouts helps in minimizing exercise-induced muscle damage. Hence, it helps in increasing the effectiveness of strength training for building muscles. Your muscles can work better if you increase consumption of vitamin E rich foods. 
4. Omega-3 Fats
Omega-3 fatty acids, the essential fats found in fish oil, flaxseed and walnuts, help in building muscles and improving muscle function. According to studies, the omega-3 fats help in regulating the genetic signaling pathway that stimulates muscle growth. Increasing intake of omega-3 fats helps in promoting synthesis of lean muscles and increasing the size of the muscles. 
5. Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 plays an important role in building strong muscles. It is known to help in assisting communication between the brain and the muscle cells, which is essential for increasing the muscle mass. Furthermore, it is known to help in reducing muscle fatigue. 
6. Vitamin B6
Your body needs vitamin B6 to convert protein into amino acids that form the building blocks for the muscle tissues. Therefore, to increase your muscle mass, in addition to increasing your protein intake, increase consumption of foods rich in vitamin B6 to help transport the amino acids to the muscles. 
During intense workouts, lactic acid, a metabolic byproduct, accumulates in the muscles. It is considered to be one of the leading causes of muscle fatigue that reduces your exercising capacity. Your body needs biotin or vitamin B7 to break down lactic acid. Biotin helps in increasing glucose uptake in the muscle tissues. Therefore, to build muscles, make sure that your diet contains biotin rich foods. 
Zinc helps in increasing muscle mass and boosting muscle strength. During workouts, it assists in removing carbon dioxide from the muscle tissues. It also plays an important role in breaking down carbohydrates and increasing glucose uptake in the muscle tissues, which is essential for building muscles.